It is commonly believed that erectile dysfunction is a disease of middle and old age when chronic diseases accumulate in the body, and hormone levels begin to drop. However, this opinion is not entirely correct. Indeed, the main volume of pathology occurs in men over 40, but overall, it occurs in people of various ages. The percentage of erectile dysfunction by age varies:

  • 3% of men experience erectile dysfunction between 20-40 years;
  • In middle age (40 to 60), already 15-20%;
  • After 60, one in every three men encounters this pathology.

Thus, almost anyone can face this problem - regardless of age, only the etiology of the forming process will differ. But does every man have erectile dysfunction? Of course not. Therefore, by knowing the causes of this disease, one can try to prevent it or, if it occurs, cure it correctly.

Erectile Dysfunction in Teenagers and Young Men

In the general population, the main cause of the disease is organic processes - chronic diseases and a decrease in the level of sex hormones. However, for young men, who make up a small percentage of all patients, this statement is not true. By the age of 20, people rarely accumulate severe decompensated chronic pathologies, and the level of the hormonal profile against the backdrop of or immediately after puberty is at its most optimal values.

The main source of dysfunction for these becomes psychological aspects:

  • Insecurity in one's own strengths due to low self-esteem;
  • Depressive, anxiety disorders;
  • Difficulties in relationships or problems finding a suitable partner;
  • Lack of experience in sexual relations from both partners;
  • Frequent changes of sexual partners, promiscuous sex life;
  • Chronic stress and fatigue;
  • Inappropriate setting (lack of a private room, living with hyper-caring or controlling parents).

In such cases, the disease develops sharply, against the backdrop of complete well-being, often can be related to a specific partner or surrounding environment - and even teenagers, who seem too young to think about this problem, are susceptible to it. Sudden erectile dysfunction at 21 is a typical complication of psychological problems.

Despite the prevalence of psychogenic etiology, in some cases, when the pathology develops gradually, one should not forget about the small possibility of organic causes:

  • Type 1 diabetes (a hereditary pathology that manifests in childhood and adolescence);
  • Congenital developmental anomalies;
  • Tumors of the pituitary gland and sex organs;
  • Taking certain medications;
  • Narcotic or alcohol intoxication or dependency.

Erectile Dysfunction in Middle Age (at 40)

By middle age, men gradually begin to accumulate various chronic diseases of organs and systems, which much more often can lead to the development of erectile dysfunction. Therefore, as age progresses, the percentage of this pathology gradually begins to rise, erectile dysfunction at 40 can be caused by the following pathologies:

  • Arterial hypertension, heart failure;
  • Type 2 diabetes (acquired);
  • Oncological processes;
  • Benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostatitis;
  • Atherosclerosis;
  • Untreated sexually transmitted infections in time.

And also by a specific way of life:

  • Sedentary lifestyle, lack of sufficient physical activity (standing or sitting work);
  • Improper diet, increased amount of smoked foods, fried, carbohydrates and fats, fast food;
  • Excessive body weight;
  • Long history of smoking and alcohol consumption;
  • Drug addiction;
  • Chronic exposure to stress;
  • Taking certain medications.

However, one should not forget that even in middle age, a man can be haunted by psychological problems: difficulties in family life (children's transitional age, experienced divorce), difficulties with work, "midlife crisis". Even with a prevailing percentage of organic causes, one needs to care about the mental state of an adult person no less than about the state of a teenager.

Age-Related Erectile Dysfunction

After 60 years, the pathology forms in almost every third man. Such a widespread occurrence of the disorder is associated not only with an increase in the number of chronic diseases and mental disorders but also with a gradual change in hormonal background.

Insufficiency of testosterone and a decrease in testicular function are very characteristic of elderly men. In the testicles, the number of Leydig cells (they secrete sex hormones) decreases, and the level of testosterone at the age of 50-70 years drops almost by 50% compared to the level of 20-40 years. This hormone is responsible not only for maintaining erectile function but also for the qualitative morphology of the structures of the penis - innervating its nerves, supplying blood arteries, structural integrity of the cavernous bodies, and tunica albuginea.

Gradual damage to the endothelium of vessels and decreased regeneration ability in the elderly over time leads to the formation of erectile dysfunction. However, the impact of previously listed chronic diseases should not be forgotten. Undoubtedly, a man with diabetes, arterial hypertension, obesity, and kidney disease is much more likely to find himself with this disorder than a man for whom age is the only risk factor.

Erectile dysfunction at 20, 30, 40, or 60 years old will be an acute problem, significantly reducing the quality of life for any man. It's important to understand that it doesn't arise on its own – it is caused by a multitude of different risk factors, many of which the patient himself can often rectify. Controlling one's own lifestyle, adhering to proper nutrition and physical activities, avoiding promiscuous sex life, and dependencies will help reduce the risk of developing the disease. And giving up these vices and using special devices will correct the developed erectile dysfunction.